Committee urges Minister to improve road safety

Session: 2007/2008

Date: 08 July 2008

Reference: ENV 05/07/08

The Committee for the Environment has responded to Minister Sammy Wilson MLA on a raft of measures to improve safety on Northern Ireland’s roads.

Responding to DoE proposals to review the current road safety strategy, the Committee urged the Minister to ensure the drink-driving limit is strictly enforced and to consider the implementation of a graduated licensing scheme.

The Committee also supports the publication of a revised version of the highway-code.

After engaging with stakeholders and interested groups, the Committee Chairperson, Mr Patsy McGlone MLA, said:

“Reducing the number of road fatalities and injuries has to be the number one priority. The Committee strongly encourages measures which make Northern Ireland’s roads safer.

The Committee, in its response to the Minister, also indicated support for: -

  • The introduction of a learner driver logbook
  • Increased alcohol and drugs awareness programmes and experience of motorway driving for learners
  • Proposals for a Graduated Fixed Penalty and Deposit Scheme
  • The principle of graduated penalties for speeding drivers
  • The proposal for mutual recognition of driving disqualifications
  • Proposals for mutual recognition of ‘lesser offences’
  • Proposal for the licensing of operators

The Committee also recommended that the Minister introduce a practical Road Safety education programme to make children and young people aware of all road dangers.

Mr McGlone added:

“We engaged in extensive consultation with many interest groups and thank them for their contribution on what is a major issue of concern across the entire community.

We support proposals for a graduated licensing scheme and feel it is imperative that the drink driving limit is enforced on both sides of the border to ensure consistency.”


Notes to editors:

The Chairperson of the Committee is Mr Patsy McGlone 
The Deputy Chairperson of the Committee is Mr Cathal Boylan

The Committee has a further nine members:

Mr Billy Armstrong, Mr Trevor Clarke, Mr Ian McCrea, Mr David Ford, Mr Tommy Gallagher, Mr Samuel Gardiner, Mr Daithi McKay, Mr Alastair Ross, Mr Peter Weir.

The Committee has a scrutiny, policy development and consultative role, and advises the Minister of the Environment directly on the policies of the Department.

The Clerk to the Committee is: 
Mrs. Patricia Casey 
Clerk, Committee for the Environment 
Rm 247, Parliament Buildings 
Belfast BT4 3XX 

For further information, or to arrange an interview or photo opportunity, please contact:

Ms. Stephanie Mallon 
Press Office, 
Room B2, Parliament Buildings 
Belfast BT4 3XX 

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